Grantham receives only minor damage

STARK MEMORIES: Cars piled against the bridge in the wake of Grantham’s 2011 disaster.
STARK MEMORIES: Cars piled against the bridge in the wake of Grantham’s 2011 disaster. Bev Lacey

THREE Grantham homes were damaged in the recent floods, compared to 120 homes that were destroyed, damaged or badly flooded in the January 2011 disaster.

Lockyer Valley Mayor Steve Jones said this result showed the value of the Grantham land swap, which followed the 2011 floods.

Cr Jones said the decision to implement the Australia-first swap arrangement had saved residents a potential $30 million and, more importantly, had allowed them to feel safe.

The damage bill for Grantham would be about $20,000 this year, he estimated.

"We won a lot of awards last year for this project, but seeing how well this worked was by far the best reward we have received," Cr Jones said. "I have no doubt families in this area cringe every time they hear ... rain.

"It brings them nightmares and I hoped they would never have to go through anything like that ever again."

After the 2011 floods, 88 blocks of land were swapped and settled in Grantham, with more pending.

"Not all of these blocks have been built on yet, but by land swapping we have stopped the future possibility of building on those vacant blocks in the flood prone areas of Grantham," Cr Jones said.

"Having a few homes inundated with water is still something we need to prevent, but when you compare that figure to the 120 homes from two years ago this is quite incredible."

To allow for the land swap, the council acquired a 935-acre land parcel and worked to design a new community on higher ground.



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